Balance – Live Episode: Live in Austin!/Transcript

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Transcript by the lovely volunteers at TAZscripts.

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[Intro music fades in, audience cheers.]

Griffin: Uh—

Clint: Hey!

Justin: If you were doing a documentary about us. That would be the moment that you just saw, where you’d be like, “And after that, it all went wrong.”

Travis: I brought some hard candy that I was gonna like, fling out into the audience.

Griffin: No, I told him it’s— [crosstalk]

Travis: Griffin told me not to do it but it sounds like...

Griffin: It’s fucking jawbreakers, those would be—those have a ballistic property—

Clint: You’ll put an eye out! You’ll put an eye out!

Griffin: This is probably not allowed. Look at that. [Audience still cheering]

Clint: Don’t forget the balcony, Travis.

Justin: “After Travis blinded an extremely litigious Austinite with his jawbreakers…”

Travis: That’s gonna be it. I have a lot more, but I’ll just eat those during the show.

Justin: “It all fell apart after that.”

Griffin: I wanna thank… Oh, shit.

[Cheering, laughter as Clint puts a big bottle of Gatorade on the table]

Travis: A good start.

Clint: Boy, I have no— [unidentifiable]

Justin: I hope everybody’s getting psyched, apparently halfway through Dad’s gonna run a fuckin marathon. Just like, blast the electrolytes.

Griffin: Uh—

Justin: ‘What are you doing tonight Clint?’ ‘Uh, podcast and rugby for four hours apparently.’

Griffin: I’m glad you guys dressed up for this.

Travis: I didn’t.

Griffin: Oh. I was gonna say, I’m confused why you decided to cosplay as Tingle, Travis Touchdown and M. Bison from the Street Fighter movie.

Travis: This is Stolen Century Magnus.

Griffin: Yeah, sure.

Travis: He’s kind of a Johnny Storm type.

Travis: I will have to change glasses though because these are not prescription.

Justin: Hey, hey, uh, did anybody bring spell cards?

[Laughter, faint YES]

Griffin: Did you really?

Justin: Come on up!

[Long and loud applause]

Travis: Here.

Griffin: Sick as hell.

Travis: [muffled by audience cheering] Do you want some hard candy?

Griffin: [through laughter] Hold on wait, hold on wait, did anybody bring cleric spell cards?

Clint: Did anybody else bring cleric spell cards?...And a hush falls over the room. [A hush actually falls over the room]

Travis: That’s ‘cause no one plays as clerics.

Justin: That’s from an imaginary world where Dad uses those spells at all, to heal.

Griffin: Well, we’re gonna have to figure that out as we go, huh?

Clint: I’ll just make the shit up as I usually do.

Travis: Do you guys know what spells Merle has?

[audience yells Zone of Truth!]

Travis: Thank you.

Clint: What was that again?

[audience yells Zone! of! Truth!]

Travis: Don’t play into that, he knew exactly what you said.

Clint: I have an eyepatch, I can’t hear very well…

Travis: Get out, M. Bison.

Griffin: Um.

Justin: My man, what was your— who brought me the cards, what’s your name?

Audience member: Joe.

Griffin: Joe?

Justin: Sorry?

Joe: Joe!

Justin: Joe, please don’t let me forget to give these back to you, I’ll feel bad forever. [laughter]

Griffin: Y’all wanna get started?

Travis: Yes!

[cheering]

Griffin: I’m trying— we’re trying a new thing. Travis got me this soundboard for my birthday, and so I have some music cues, and so like, I’m gonna try and put some music in it, and if it doesn’t go well I’m just gonna stop doing it in the middle of the show.

Travis: We also each bought new dice for this show. Griffin and I by choice—

Griffin: Yeah.

Travis: Dad and Justin because they just didn’t bring ‘em.

Justin: And I— I let Charlie pick mine, so: [shows Hello Kitty dice]

[cheering]

Griffin: Let’s play Dungeons and Dragons.

Justin: Hell yeah!

Travis: This is fun, we haven’t played Dungeons and Dragons in a while.

Griffin: S— Oh shit, we haven’t played Dungeons and Dragons in like, three months.

Justin: We were having a mini panic attack about it, yeah.

Clint: No.

Griffin: So. Uh, the three of you awaken to the sound of a bell chiming nine times. And just now I’m realizing that would’ve been a super good sound to get on my soundboard.

Clint[?]: Bong, bong, bong, bongbongbongbongbongbongbong.

Griffin: So, the three of you wake up, and you are in bed in your dorm room, and you throw open the curtains, and it’s just a lovely day outside. You see the Grand Library next to this big shiny glass cube, and you can see students reading and studying and milling about.

And you see wagons below, and they’re bringing in hoards of townies who swarm into the school’s main entrance. You see some sort of athletic team running drills on a really well-manicured field across the road. Um, it’s a really busy scene, and it’s one you’re well-accustomed to seeing every morning when you wake up here, at Neverwinter High School.

[audience cheers]

[Persona 4 - Pursuing My True Self plays]

Clint: Is that our alma mater?

Griffin: No, uhhhh, all three of you make a wisdom-saving throw for me.

[music stops]

Clint: Which one is that?

Travis: The 20-sided one.

Clint: The 20-sided one?

Travis: Woah, that’s not good! Thanks, new dice, that’s a threeeeee!

Justin: 15. [crosstalk]

Travis: I’m dumb!

Clint: Holy shit, it’s an 18!

Griffin: Hey, all right!

Travis: Should we switch?

Clint: Why now?! Why now?

Griffin: Magnus, it’s another day of high school!

Travis: Sounds about right!

Griffin: Uh, Taako and Merle, you immediately realize something horrible has gone wrong.

[Laughter]

Travis: Thanks, new dice.

Griffin: Do you just wanna take the eyepatch off or?

Clint: Only when I wanna see.

Griffin: Okay.

Clint: Well ever since the whole drop-the-Gatorade incident.

Griffin: Taako and Merle, you remember going to sleep in the real world at the Bureau of Balance Headquarters and waking up in this weird high school dorm room? You have to, I imagine, clue Magnus into this fact.

Magnus: Whaaaaaat?!

Griffin: Yeah, Magnus, I think you were like, [singsong] excited for a new day, got my new Jansport. Got a new binder and it’s... blue! Justin, should we walk off the stage for like, 15 minutes while you shuffle your deck?

Justin: Blame Joe!

Griffin: Joe, why didn’t you have your spellcards sorted in the way—

Travis: Joe!

Justin: Nah nah, you’re good, Joe, thank you.

Griffin: Before we get started, I wanted to ask, what were the three of you like in high school? Obviously you didn’t go to high school together, or in Neverwinter, but here you are. What is your high school persona like?

Travis: I’m gonna give of you a name, Griffin.

Griffin: Okay.

Travis: And that name is A.C. Slater.

[cheers, laughter]

Travis: And that stands for Ability Check Slater.

Griffin: [laughs] Armor Class would work too ‘cuz that’s what AC stands for.

Travis: Oh, that also works!

Griffin: But okay.

Travis: I’ll go as D.C. Slater.

Griffin: Okay. Uh, Merle?

Clint: Ummmm, this may surprise you, but I got my ass kicked on a regular basis in high school.

[audience awwws]

Griffin: Oh no…

Travis: Don’t— this is imaginary!

Clint: It was very— Oh!

Travis: Don’t be sad.

Griffin: It’s imaginary, yeah.

Clint: Imaginary? Oh, I was the king of the campus.

Griffin: Oh no!

Clint: Yeah!

Griffin: Now it’s got layers of sadness!

Clint: I uhhh was president of the—

Travis: World?

Clint: Chess club world. And I had a great hot rod.

[Audience yelps in delight]

Travis: If you know what I mean…

Griffin: No! Nope!

Clint: I’m a grandfather!

Griffin: Taako. What was Taako like in high school?

Justin: Ummmm, the coolest? One at the school. I think Taako had a devoted following of people—

[Clint laughs, a few audience members squeal]

Justin: Not everybody got him, but the people that did were into it.

Griffin: So it sounds like we have three A.C. Slaters on our hands maybe, a little bit.

Justin: No, like, I’m more— I’m more like—

Griffin: Zack Morris?

Travis: Yeah!

Justin: Like the Decemberists of cool. You know? And Travis is Aerosmith I guess?

Griffin: All right.

Travis: Whoa! Don’t you put that on me!

Justin: This was before The Decemberists were in like, AT&T commercials or whatever. I’m just kiddin’ Decemberists, I love you guys.

Clint: Who— Who?

Travis: Are the Decemberists here tonight?

[Scattered audience members cheer]

Justin: Yeah they— they said.

Griffin: Holy shit, that’s a big band!

Travis: Don’t woo! Are you the Polyphonic Spree? How many of you are there?!

Justin: [crosstalk] Did Arcade Fire come out?

Clint: Who are the Decemberists?

Travis: Ooh, guhhhh… [crosstalk]

Griffin: So— [crosstalk]

Travis: That one’s not a joke!

Griffin: So the three of you leave the uh, the dorm room that you share.

Clint: Aww…

Griffin: There’s not usually a three-person dorm room, I’m imagining like a Terrace House bedroom situation—

[cheering]

Griffin: You make your way into the dorm’s common room, and it’s quiet in here. First period is about to begin, so most of the students have run off into the classroom building. There’s one student here, though, and he’s sitting on a couch in the middle of the common area with just this big pile of books splayed out in front of him. And he’s reading one of them, he’s drinking this really strong-smelling tea. And as you enter, he turns his bespectacled face towards you and says:

[Deeper normal Griffin voice]: Hello, sirs.

[cheering, laughter]

Griffin: Sure enough, you see a high school aged Angus McDonald.

[more cheering]

Griffin: And And he looks—

Travis: Super buff!

Griffin: Yeah, he’s gotten yoked. He’s ripped. He’s like, he looks like he’s undergone like, four or five growth spurts. He’s about your size, Magnus.

Travis: Get out!

Griffin: And he says,

Angus: You should get a move on. You all are gonna be late for class.

Travis: Nerd!

Taako: Angus, what’s uhhh, going on?
Angus: What do you mean, sir?
Taako: Okay, lemme ask that in a different que— way, uh. Do you think anything weird’s going on?
Angus: Uh, you three are running late for class. I don’t—
Taako: Alright, thanks, Ango, that’ll do it!
Angus: No, tell me, what’s— lemme help you out, what’s the situation? You seem out of sorts.

Travis: I don’t like this smooth jazz Angus. [imitating voice] Hey, you tell me, what’s wrong?

Angus: This is just my voice—

Justin/Travis: I’m listening.

Angus: I hit puberty [pronounced poo-ber-dee] and it just happened.
Magnus: Wait, you hit what?
Merle: It’s pronounced poo-BEHR-tee.
Angus: Sorry. What’s going on, tell me, you seem—

Travis: Griffin, I would like to do a strength check to try to take his book away and hold it over his head.

Griffin: All right. This will be a strength contest.

Travis: That’s nothing. Why are these new dice so bad?

Griffin: I got a 25. He’s like— [Griffin gestures]

Clint: Well, he only rolled a 4, so you’ll—

Travis: Yeah I got a 8— 9— to be fair, I got a 12.

Clint: Give him a wedgie!

Griffin: He dislocates your shoulder when you pull the book away. He says,

Angus: What— What’s going on, what’s the matter?
Taako: Uhh. Mm.
Magnus: Well, when last we saw you, you were, uhhh—
Merle: A twerp!
Magnus: Uh, a child?
Angus: Okay, I’m… okay.
Magnus: And we were not.
Taako: Yeah, we were— we were— we’re grown folk.
Angus: You’re saying this is some sort of—
Taako: Exactly.
Merle: Imbroglio.
Angus: Well, that sounds like you could be going through any number of things.
Taako: I mean, probably magic.
Magnus: Could be a dream?
Taako: I don’t wanna get too Law & Order here.
Angus: Have you— have you tried poking through the walls? Maybe it’s just one big illusion?

Travis: I run at the wall.

Griffin: It’s a— It’s a hard— It’s a hard, hard wall.

Magnus: Ow! Not that!
Angus: You could’ve gone back in time, but did you all—

Travis: I try to go forward in time.

Taako: Well, Ango, if we had gone back in time, you would be younger, or nonexistent. Oh, what a fantasy!
Angus: Maybe it’s some sort of parallel dimension? No, that’d be lame. Um… Maybe it could be a dream? But the fact that you all realize something was wrong makes it sound like you’re all in the same dream…
Magnus: I didn’t. To be fair, I didn’t. I’m wicked stupid.
Angus: Okay.

Justin: Can I just say? The extent to which Angus has bought into this and the speed at which he has bought into this is truly upsetting.

Griffin: Listen, he’s a—

Justin: Like, that is a man whose grasp of reality is like, razor-thin.

Griffin: He’s an eru— an erudite young man, and he’s quick on his feet who realizes something’s wrong and his entire life in this universe is a lie and a dream. Maybe.

Justin: Yeah, he’s like, ready to ride it out

Travis: It’s possible we’re just all on Salvia.

[Long pause]

Griffin: You’ve ruined the Act III twist… He says,

Angus: Why don’t you let me look into this.

Griffin: And he piles up a few books off the table.

Angus: You should really get to class though. Do you know where you’re going?

Travis: Oh god, this is my dream all over again!

Clint: Do we have pants on?

Griffin: He says,

Angus: Hey, uh Brody, can you show ‘em the way?

Travis: Who?

Griffin: Uh, and in the corner— I just heard 12 people in the audience go [disgusted] ‘Brody?’ I’m allowed to do new characters, it doesn’t have to all be fuckin’ callbacks. In the corner you see a young man who, surprisingly you haven’t noticed until now. He’s wearing a bright red T-shirt underneath a bright green nylon jacket with bright blue sleeves. He’s wearing sunglass—

[mixed audience reaction of horror and disgust]

What was that reaction? He’s wearing sunglasses even though he’s been indoors this entire time, and when Angus mentions his name, he puts down this enormous fucking Stone of Farspeech. Uh, and he sets it down on the table next to him. And—

Travis: [crosstalk] Oh, I see.

Griffin: He tucks it into the pocket of his faded jeans, and this isn’t Barry. Barry’s not the only one that gets to wear blue jeans in this universe. And he skateboards up to you guys from like, six feet away.

Justin: [gagging noises]

Griffin: And he says uh,

Brody: [nasally nerdbro voice] What’s up Tres Horny Boys? You guys ready for another day of boring old school? Ughhckk, homework, riiiight?
Magnus: Brody, I’m— I’m gonna stop you right there for just one second, if I could talk to Taako just for a second.

Justin: Uh, you’re gonna have to talk loud cuz the moment Brody came a-runnin, Taako was like repulsed backwards. Like, like a thirty-foot radius forcefield around Brody,

Taako: Noooooooope!
Magnus: Is it just me, or is this dude the coolest?
Merle: [singsong] It’s just youuuuuu.
Magnus: Fair enough!

Griffin: He does a kickflip standing still—

Magnus: Whooooooooaaaaaa!!

Griffin: He says,

Brody: Come on, I’ll show you around the classroom building, or as I call it, the cellblock, riiight?
Magnus: Whooooooooooooooooaaaaaa!!!

Justin: Audience, please don’t encourage Brody.

[cheering]

Brody: Brody really needed that, thanks!

Griffin: So Brody skates you down the long hallways of the classroom building.

Travis: Are we like, jogging behind him to keep up? Like [exhausted panting]

Griffin: He’s a courteous, uh, skater. He’s going—

Clint: He’s going serpentine so we can stay up with him.

Griffin: He’s going at more of a canter. And the classroom building halls are lined with these windows offering you more spectacular views of the campus outside. But the halls are fairly empty. First period has started and so most of the students here are already tucked away in the various classes that you are passing by here on your skateboard tour. There’s calculus and history and music theory and speech & debate and so on. There are adminis— some speech and debate fans out there.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: There are some administrative rooms, big teacher’s lounge, student council room, an AV room. And from your dorm you entered onto the third floor of the classroom building, and at the far end of this hall is a bridge leading into the practice building. And every few dozens feet or so are vending machines advertising strange potions with fantastical names like Snapple and Fruitopia.

Travis: Griffin, can I roll to buy a Snapple?

Griffin: You don’t have to roll, do you challenge the Snapple machine?

Travis: I do, I wanna shake a Snapple loose, I don’t wanna pay for it.

Griffin: Oh, okay. You kind of—

Travis: Oh, you know what, I’m gonna Fonzi punch it. [crosstalk]

Griffin: [crosstalk] Yeah, of course, look at you.

Travis: I’m gonna Fonz it.

Justin: Of course.

Griffin: Yeah, of course, look at you.

Travis: Yeah! That’s a 19!

Griffin: That’s your roll. Uhh, a Snapple and a Fruitopia fall out.

Travis: Eyyyyyyyy. I toss the Fruitopia to… Taako.

Griffin: Oh, hear that Merle?

Taako: Hell yeah!
Merle: No, I’m fine, don’t worry about my ass.

Griffin: But you have your fuckin gallon of Gatorade over there.

Clint: This is real!

Griffin: This is all real to—

Justin: Someone listening to this episode later just said— ‘Ohhh, he has a big jug of Gatorade. The thing from earlier make total sense now!’

Travis: Griffin, I slam the Snapple in one.

[pause]

Griffin: …Okay.

Travis: And then I read the cap. What’s the cap say, Griffin?

Griffin: The cap of the Snapple?

Travis: Yeah.

Griffin: Says uh, this was poi— this was poisoned.

Clint: Did you know that if you turn the tab around on a can of soda, it’s a straw holder?

Griffin: Whoooa, it says that on the Snapple?

Travis: They’re advertising for soda.

Griffin: [crosstalk] For canned beverages now.

Travis: What a cross promotion.

Justin: Their slogan for years has been, “You’re wasting your time with Snapple!”

Travis: “What’re you doing, there’s soda out there!”

Griffin: Brody points down a hallway and says

Brody: Your guys’ classes, or should I say your ppprrriiison cellllllllllllls.
Taako: All right, Brody.
Brody: Should be down here. Try not to let— Try not to let ‘em keep ya down, all right?
Magnus: It’s not Gattaca, Brody, come on!
Brody: Later, skaterrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrs.

Griffin: And then he pivots on his board and he skates down the stairwell and just grinds out of sight.

Magnus: Taako, I’ve turned on Brody.
Merle: Can we kill him later?
Magnus: Yes, we can!

Griffin: Aww riiii—

Travis: He’s definitely the Big Bad. Don’t you worry.

Griffin: You’re walking down the hallway toward this row of classes at the end, and as you approach, you smell something coming from the bathrooms. Cigarettes.

Travis: Marijua—

Clint: Whaaat?

[audience boos]

Griffin: And out of the bath— booooo. And out of the bathrooms walks three ruffians of varying sizes. Their hair is greased back and they’re wearing matching leather jackets emblazoned with a hammerhead. Marvey—

[cheering]

Griffin: It’s Marvey, Jerreeeeee, and Little Jerry.

Justin: Noooo!

[more cheering]

Travis: Griffin, did you say the name of the school was Fanservice High?

Griffin: Listen, it’s front-loaded.

Justin: [through laughter] Also, for all those Marvey and Jerreeeeee fans out there, they’re [laughing wheeze] back!

Griffin: And Marvey— Marvey says,

Maarvey: Well look who we got here—

Travis: I punch him. [rolls dice] 20! Nat 20!

[cheering]

Clint: Crit nat 20. [crosstalk]

Travis: [crosstalk] YEAH!

[continued cheering]

Griffin: Alright, roll damage.

Travis: I don’t know what my unarmed is—

Griffin: It’s uh, one d4 plus your strength. It’s not a big hit, but it’s a—

Travis: Wait, do I have Phantom Fist?

Griffin: No. Oh, and yeah you guys don’t have any of your, your stuff.

Travis: Oh, no, one d4.

Justin: But I do have the Umbrastaff, right?

Griffin: No.

Justin: Can somebody come take the Umbrastaff, please?

Travis: Three… plus…

Justin: I’m just kidd— I’m just kidding, I’m go—

Travis: Uh… three plus four, so seven.

Griffin: Okay. Marvey then says a few—

Travis: Oh, wait. Hold on. It was a crit 20.

Griffin: Oh yeah, you roll double damage.

Travis: That’s another four, so that’s uh, is uh… fifteen.

[brief pause]

Griffin: WHAT THE FUCK?

Travis: Double damage is four and three plus four plus four.

Griffin: [indignant] I DIDN’T GIVE MARVEY HP!

[laughter]

Griffin: I GUESS I—

Travis: I’M LATE FOR CLASS!

Justin: Yeah..

Travis: I DON’T HAVE TIME FOR BANTER!

Griffin: Alright you– he says,

Maarvey: Tryin’ to get to class, little fishie? No problem as long as you pick—

[Griffin mimes getting punched in the face, audience laughter]

Griffin: Uh, little Jerry says,

Little Jerry: Hey! Come on!

Griffin: Uh, and, I think Little Jerry and Jerreeeeee are going to attack you I guess. Now we’re just having an impromptu hall fight!

[laughter, then cheers]

Justin: Uh, I, okay, before anybody can do anything, I quickly reach into my bag of components and cast ‘fold my arms and chill.’

[laughter while audience cheers]

Justin: [laughing] Cuz dumb-dumb here decided to start a fight.

Travis: Now, I know how this works. First day you’ve gotta punch the biggest person you see.

Griffin: I guess. That was a 12 and an 18 versus A.C.

Travis: Uh… well— wh— no, no both of those miss.

Griffin: Okay. You fight off Jerreeeeee and Little Jerry...

[crosstalk]

Travis: I punch them back!

Griffin: Oh my god.

[audience laughter]

Travis: [shouting] 20! Critical hiiiiit!

Clint: God!

[audience cheering]

[indistinguishable]

Griffin: [weary] … Okay.

Travis: That’s a four and a two so six plus eight. 14.

[crosstalk]

Griffin: Who— who was that for?

Travis: Uh, Little Jerry.

Griffin: [laughing] Alright.

[audience laughter and cheering]

Clint: Thank god you didn’t save this for the end of the—

[cross talk]

Griffin: Yeah, I know. Okay, Little Jerry is down on the ground now with Marvey and uh, you see them kinda scramble to their feet, and get ready to launch a counterattack but you hear footsteps coming down the hallway.

Uh, and you hear someone clear their throat and when you look to the source of the interjection you see a dark-haired man wearing black and gray robes and he has a large silver medallion around his neck. Uh, and he walks towards you and the Hammerhead gang sorta rights themselves and they fix their hair and they say in unison:

Hammerheads: Good morning, Principal Hawthorne!

Griffin: Uh and he says:

Principal Hawthorne: [slowly] You boys weren’t fighting were you?
Magnus: No, sir! [crosstalk]
Principal Hawthorne: [crosstalk] You do know– You know the consequences of fighting at Neverwinter High.
Magnus: Death.
Merle: Hit him, hit him, Magnus!
Magnus: Nope!
Merle: Hit, Mr Hawthorne!
Magnus: I respect authority. I am lawful good.

[Audience laughter]

Griffin: He kind of— [crosstalk]

Clint: [crosstalk] My ass.

Griffin: He kind of surveys the scene and sees which side of this, uh, fight has more bloody noses, and he points to the Hammerheads and he says,

Principal Hawthorne: You three get to class.

Griffin: And they scamper off and he looks at you three and he says,

Principal Hawthorne: You three, tell me—

Justin: [laughing] Oh oh! Did they get to the infirmary? ‘Cause they got hit for twenty points of damage.

[Audience laughter]

Griffin: Yeah.

Clint: And they’re kids?

Griffin: Yeah, I think they probably do, they run off to the nurse’s office to get seen to. Um, Principal Hawthorne says,

Principal Hawthorne: You three.
Magnus: Yes, sir.
Principal Hawthorne: Were you bullying those sweet boys?
Magnus: No, sir, uh we came up on them fighting each other and we tried to break them up—
Taako: No, Mag— Magnus sucker punched them, sir. For sure.

[Audience clapping, cheering]

Merle: We saw the whole thing! [crosstalk]
Taako: [crosstalk] Wait, wait, wait—
Magnus: [crosstalk] What we meant to say was, we caught them smoking cigarettes and I said, no! Not today! Not here, not in my school, sir!

Griffin: He says,

Principal Hawthorne: I do smell cigarettes. Magnus, let me smell your fingers. [threateningly]
Magnus: Well! Okay!
Merle: ’Scuse me?!
Magnus: Also gross but also, okay.

Griffin: He sniffs and he says,

Principal Hawthorne: These are nicotine free. You’re good to go.

[Audience laughter]

Magnus: Hi five, sir!

Griffin: He says,

Principal Hawthorne: You three get to class.

Travis: Oookay?

Principal Hawthorne: You’re late enough as is.

Griffin: And he turns, and with a swoop of his robe he turns and walks away.

Clint: Were we supposed to have known who that was?

Travis: Was it Nathaniel Hawthorne?

Griffin: Yeah, it was Nathaniel Hawthorne.

[Audience laughter]

Travis: Damn, now I wish I had punched him! [Griffin and audience laugh] I hate that idiot!

Griffin: So! The three of you make your way down the hallway and each approach a different classroom, that for some reason you just know is your first period class. And for this next part, I didn’t prep anything, I just let each of you decide what your first period class was gonna be? And… it will affect sort of a later thing? But, uh, let’s just feel out the space a little bit. Uhm, uh we’ll start with… we’ll start with, uhhh… Magnus. What class do you have for—

Travis: Music Appreciation.

[Audience whoops and cheers]

Griffin: You walk into Music Appreciation class. Ummmmm… uhhhhhh…

Travis: [laughing] So far so good with the role in this!

[awkward laughter from Griffin]

Griffin: Mr. Joe is the teacher. Thank you Joe. Uh.

[Audience cheering]

Justin: [dramatically] Arrive with spell cards, leave with immortality.

[Audience laughter]

Griffin: Uh, and it’s– it’s finals day here in music appreciation class. Surveying the room… surveying the room, you don't really recognize anybody here? Uh except for, in like the far back corner, is a high school aged Carey and Killian!

Travis: Yeaaaaaah!

[Audience cheering and applauding]

Travis: I— I post up with those fools.

Griffin: Yeah. You’re doing what?

Travis: I post up with them?

Griffin: Okay.

Travis: I go sit where they are?

Griffin: Uhhh yeah I think the three of you just spend time passing, passing notes? During the class?

Magnus: Uhhh real quick before we, uh, it’s real cute, um before we get started, uhhhh… [voice goes higher] do you guys notice anything weird?

Griffin: Uhhh, Carey says, uh…

Carey: No? Nothing weird?

Griffin: This sounds like Brody, is the problem, I did Carey’s voice for Brody. She says—

Carey: No, what’s going on Magnus?
Magnus: Well, um, like yesterday? We were all like, of legal drinking age.

[Audience laughter]

Magnus: At least. I’m not going to assume, I— I’ve never asked? You? But I thought, older than high school?

Griffin: Uh… Killian says,

Killian: I don’t know how to even respond to that, are you—
Magnus: Fair enough.
Killian: Hey, are you on party drugs right now?

[Audience laughter]

Travis: Do I need to roll to check that?

Griffin: Oh no, you’re not on party drugs.

Travis: Okay! We’ll just [crosstalk] let the DM make decisions for my character, I guess!

Griffin: Mr. Joe— Mr. Joe at the front of the class is like,

Mr. Joe: You three! Keep it down! Magnus?
Magnus: Yep?
Mr. Joe: It’s your turn for your oral presentation.

[Audience laughter]

Justin: Ahaha! Nice.

Mr. Joe: Magnus?
Magnus: Yes?
Mr. Joe: For your final I have your song written down here that you have written a report about. [faint audience laughter]

Clint: Oooohhhhh goooooooood [continued laughing]

Mr. Joe: It says here…
Magnus: Yes?
Mr. Joe: I’ve never heard this before, and I teach music. Professionally. The name of the band is inappropriate. [Pause] Because it says ‘Barenaked Ladies.’

[Audience cheering and applauding]

Magnus: Yes, sir?
Mr. Joe: The song is ‘One Week’ by ‘BareNaked Ladies.’

[Audience cheers even louder]

Travis: Ahem-hem-hem.

Justin: Wait, you gotta button?

Griffin: No, I don’t have that on the board. I didn’t know he was gonna fucking— No.

Travis: And where— where would you— [crosstalk]

Griffin: Hang on wait. Can everyone just sing a few bars of ‘BareNaked Ladies’ ‘One Week’?

{26:28}

Travis: [singing] It’s been one week since you looked at me…

[audience continuing the song from where Travis left off, quickly comes to a stop]

Travis: [indistinguishable singing]

Griffin: Nobody knows the words. [slight pause] Oh, they do know the— all of the words.

Justin: Let’s pick it up from [crosstalk] ‘Chickity China’...

Travis: Wait, we’ll start at the good part. [starts singing] Chickity China the Chinese Chicken You have a drumstick and your...

Travis & Justin: ...brain stops tickin,’ watchin’ X-Files with no lights on, we’re dans la maison I hope the Smoking Man’s in this one; like Harrison Ford I’m getting frantic, like Sting I’m tantric...

Griffin: [singing continues in the background] Now we can’t release this.

Travis & Justin: Like Snickers, guaranteed to satisfy...

Griffin: It’s not fair use. This is not a parody. This is just the song.

Travis & Justin: Like Kurosawa I make mad films, ‘kay, I don’t make films, or if I did they’d have a samurai. [indistinguishable sounds to fill in lyrics they don’t remember] always flying off the backswing. Get in tune with Sailor Moon ‘cause that cartoon has got the boom anime babes that make me think the wrong thing. How can I help it, if I think it's funny when you’re mad? Trying hard not to smile though I feel bad. I’m the kind of guy that laughs at a funeral; can’t understand what I mean? Well you soon will...

Griffin: Holy shit, guys??

Travis & Justin: I have a tendency to wear my mind on my sleeve, I have an history of taking off my shirt...

Griffin: Alright—

Travis: It’s been one week since you looked at me… [stops singing]

[audience cheering]

Justin: That was good.

Griffin: Yeah.

Clint: The theme from F•R•I•E•N•D•S, ladies and gentlemen.

[Griffin laughing]

Clint: Right? Was that right?

Griffin: Hold on. Hold on. One second.

Clint: ‘Kay.

[‘Yeah Baby’ Clint voice clip plays]

[Clint laughter and audience laughter/cheering]

Travis: And just like that— [crosstalk]

Griffin: This is a good present— [crosstalk]

Travis: Birthday present—

Griffin: Thank you, Travis, for this good present. Alright, so… appreciate for [stumbles] Dr. Joe now. He just graduated.

[Travis laughing]

Griffin: Sitting at his desk—

Travis: My— my rendition of ‘One Week’ was that good?

Dr. Joe: Appreciate for me. Appreciate it. Appreciate.

[audience laughter]

Magnus: Well, sir, here’s the thing. The song at first seems like a superficial recount of things that one might do during one week, but if you look at it on a deeper level, what it really establishes is the the time it takes to fully appreciate your partner. Because you might look at it and say ‘you know what in that moment, I acted badly, but now one week later, it's given me time to think about what you mean to me, what I come across in this relationship. Only now, one week later do I fully appreciate that I didn’t appreciate you.’ And that's the juxtaposition that you get, sir.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: He—

Justin: I’m— I’m gonna have to—

Griffin: He stares at you for a second. And he just bursts into tears.

Justin: Also, I’m just gonna assume that's what Magnus sounded like in high school.

Travis: Yeaahh… Well, my voice broke at the beginning. [chuckles]

Justin: Okay.

Clint: Are you on him about character voices now?

Travis: Well, I didn’t alter my voice the 2% that turns it into Magnus.

Griffin: Joe— Joe, where are you, Joe? [pause] A through F, what would you give that class presentation?

[Joe responds from audience]

Griffin: B plus. Alright.

Travis: Nice! [crosstalk]

Travis: I take it!

Justin: Nice. Nice.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: Magnus, take one point of inspiration that you can spend later this episode.

Travis: [crosstalk] Hell yeah.

Griffin: Uhhhhh… Merle.

Clint: Hmm?

Griffin: What class do you have?

Clint: Um… Botany!

[audience cheers]

Griffin: Ummmmm…

Clint: And I want Barry White music for mine.

Griffin: What’s your name on the left side of this row, in the front. Yes, you.

[response from female audience member]

Griffin: Ariel? Okay. Um, uh, Ms. Ariel is the teacher of this class. And, you scan the room and you kinda look around to see if you see any familiar faces and the only one that you see, in the front of the class, is Lucretia. Um—

[audience cheers]

Griffin: And, uhhhh, she has a potted plant in front of her, everybody has these potted plants, and you’re— you’re kinda late. Uh, and you recognize your potted plant kinda sitting next to Lucretia. She’s working on a nice orchid, and these are your final presentations. And, uh, Ms. Ariel walks up to you as you come up to your seat and she says:

Ms. Ariel: You’re late, Merle.

Griffin: [to Ariel in the audience] That’s not what you sound like, I apologize.

Ms. Ariel: You’re late, Merle. You know you have to turn in your flower by the end of the day.
Merle: Yes, yes, I know.

Griffin: What are you growing, in this class?

Merle: I am growing a shrubbery.

Justin: Let’s try it again. Try it again.

Merle: I am growing—

Clint: Wait, I gotta do a high school version—

Travis: A high school old man.

Justin: Yeah, motherfucker. Anything’ll do.

Clint: [away from mic] Okay.

Justin: Cut me off a piece of whatever, as long as it doesn’t sound like my father.

Travis: [crosstalk] Come on, funniest man in Huntington, stick the landing.

Clint: Alright, Alright.

Merle: [high-pitched old man voice] Uh, yeah.

[audience cheers]

Travis: That was it. That was it.

Griffin: Okay.

Merle: I, uh, I been workin’ on a shrubbery. And it’s really cool.
Ms. Ariel: Actually, it looks sick and bad and it doesn't look good. It looks sick and bad.
Merle: No, no. Its one of those Japanese shrubberies that you trim to look sick and bad. It’s really healthy, because I dump fertilizer on it every day.

Griffin: Uh, you can talk some game, but your shrubbery looks bad, and it’s gonna look bad when you turn it in unless you do some magic or whatever to it to make it look better to turn in.

Travis: Don’t say ‘or whatever,’ 'cause it's gonna be ‘or whatever.’

Merle: Well, I’m a big believer in talking to my plants.

Justin: Fuck you, I quit.

[audience laughter]

Justin: I’m out. Is Taako in the building? Taako has left the building. Taako’s smoking with the cool kids.

Griffin: Lucretia looks over at your shrubbery and she says:

Lucretia: I don't know, Merle. It looks pretty bad off. I’m worried about the grade you’re gonna get on this one.
Merle: Trust me.

Griffin: Okay.

Merle: I can do this.

Clint: Oh, god, now?

Travis: Yeah.

Griffin: Yes.

[audience laughter as Clint transforms his Gatorade bottle into a plant]

Clint: Wait a minute...

Justin (muffled): I’m here. [crosstalk]

Griffin: Is that supposed to look— be a plant now? ‘Cause, uh, okay.

Travis: Yeah, dad has turned, uh, for those of you at home—

Justin: [crosstalk] Your human sons are in the room, your actual human sons.

Travis: Yes, please, my dad has turned his Gatorade bottle into a plant.

Justin: You're still Clint McElroy. When you walk on the stage please, please be cognizant of that.

Travis: And don’t fuck this plant.

Clint: This would be—

Merle: [softly] Hi.

Justin (muffled): No.

[Griffin chuckles]

Justin (muffled): No. Stop.

Griffin: He’s— sorry, sorry, for the audience at home, [uncomfortably close to the mic] he’s fondling the plant.

Merle: Y’know, uh, I’ve been nurturing you for a long time.

[Travis walks backstage]

Justin: Hey, my— hey Trav, get me one? Will you get me one too? [crosstalk] I needed another gi— whiskey and ginger ale if anybody could hook a Justin up for this.

Merle: Nobody really understands our relationship. Y’know—

[Justin joins Travis off stage]

Clint: [distantly] The hell?

Griffin: I’m still here. [laughs] Hey, dad—

Clint: [crosstalk] You’re a freak. You are a little freak.

Griffin: Hey dad, I’m lovin’ this.

Merle: I, uh, y’know I believe in you. You have strong roots.

Griffin: It’s starting— it’s starting to grow a few leeeeeeeaves.

Merle: And someday, you’ll tower above all the other shrubs. And you’re going to [pause] blossom... into fullness.

Clint: Tell me when they get back so I can really be—

Griffin: You can see them.

Clint: Oh.

Merle: And ripeness.

Griffin: Alright!

Merle: And your sap… [crosstalk]

Justin: [crosstalk] [distant] You’re all complicit!

Merle: Your sap shall runneth. Your sap overrunneth.

Griffin: Alright, that’s good.

Justin: You’re complicit!

Clint: [crosstalk] Now wait a minute I’m on a roll!

Justin: [crosstalk] You’re all complicit!

Clint: I’m rolling!

Griffin: Alright, uhhh…

Justin: Bad people win when good people sit by and say nothing!

Griffin: The, uh, the plant grows and blooms and blossoms and is... fine...

[Clint laughs]

Griffin: Uh, Ariel, what was the grade on that one?

[response from Ariel]

Griffin: That’s a D!

[audience cheering]

Justin: That’s short for ‘don’t.’

Griffin: D is actually, uh…

Clint: Uh, no, no, no. I think she said B.

Griffin: [rising in pitch] No, I’m pretty sure it was a D for dog.

Clint: You people who seemed to like me more who are sitting near Ariel—

Griffin: Nope, nope. No judging— you, uh, you’re gonna take disadvantage later, at a moment of my choosing. We gotta keep moving. Mer— or, ah, Taako. What is your class?

Justin: Whoa, I just wanna say real quick, that is quite a strong drink you’ve prepared for me, so if things get weird later, blame Travis.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: Taako.

Justin: Hit me!

Griffin: No, you hit me. What class do you have?

Justin: [high-pitched] Home-Ec, baby!

Griffin: Okay.

[Audience Cheering]

Griffin: Yeah. [Justin and Travis laugh] All right. [crosstalk] What's your name? [answer from audience] Rick?

Clint: Rick, you’re an enabler.

Griffin: Mr. Ricky is the teacher of home economics.

[Audience Cheering]

Travis: Mr. Rick does sound like the name of the cool teacher that's like, ‘nah please call me Mr. Rick.’

Griffin: Uh Mr. Ricky— [crosstalk]

Justin: ‘Here's some booze I brought you—’

[all laugh]

Clint: ‘Don't tell Mr. Hawthorne—’

Justin: ‘Yeah, you know how he gets.’

[Rick from the audience: "I actually am a teacher!”]

Griffin: Oh, he is a teacher—

Justin: Rick is a teacher!

Two boys: Yaaaay!

Travis: You know what, teachers don't get enough applause—

Justin: Yeah.

[Continuous audience cheering]

Griffin: Yeah! Hey, let's clap for teachers!

Clint: YEAH!

Justin: And how about moms?

Griffin: Eyyy… and what about FUCKING FIREFIGHTERS? YEAH!

Clint: And let’s end all war!

Justin: Yeah!

Griffin: Whoa!

Travis: And let's hear it for podcasters!

Griffin: Okay, well, that’s— you've ruined all of it.

[applause and cheering stop]

Travis: [crosstalk] (says something)

Justin: [crosstalk] Is there something you can say about horns that will make them excited now?

Griffin: About—

Justin: About hooking horns, or—?

Griffin: Oh, hook ‘em horns—

Justin: Is that here? You do the thing with the—

Griffin: I don't think this is the right crrrroooowd for that though.

Travis: Boomer Sooner?

Clint: Who?

[Audience boos]

Griffin: Jesus Christ, Travis.

Justin: Okay, please, this is my special part, guys.

Griffin: Uh, Taako, you recognize Ren in this class—

Justin: Hell yeah!

[audience cheers]

Griffin: And she's actually saved you a seat, and she gets really excited when you come in— she says—

Ren: Taako, Taako! I saved you a seat right here c’mon c’mon c’mon!
Taako: There she is. What's up?

Griffin: Mr. Rick walks up to the front of the class and he says— and Rick, I apologize.

[audience laughter]

Clint: Wait, can I give a little background music?

Griffin: Oh, I actually— oh SHIT I had background music for all of these and I forgot them.

Clint: Aww, excellent.

Justin: Sorry, dad.

[pause]

Griffin: Wait, why is—

[Persona 4 - Like A Dream Come True begins to play]

Clint: That's really good.

Griffin: Uh—

[audience cheers]

Griffin: You walk into the class and see Ren and sit next to her, and Mr. Rick walks up to the front of the class and says:

Mr. Rick: Alright, y’all know the deal. We’re making ham sandwiches again.

Griffin: He says:

Mr. Rick: Nobody try anything funny, don't add anything weird or fancy to ‘em. I just want everybody to turn in their regular [Clint cracks up] ham sandwiches at the end of the class. Nobody better lead some kinda food revolution, [audience laughter] here in this class. I just want a plain-ass— plain-ass ham sandwich— don't tell on me I said ‘ass’ to you kids.

[audience laughter]

Clint: Mr. Rick has been teaching for a very long time, [crosstalk] hasn't he.

Griffin:  [crosstalk] He has— He says:

Mr. Rick: You got ffi— it’s just ten minutes. It's a ham sandwich, just do it. Uhhh, and again, nobody better do anything fancy or lead some sort of... Footloose-style... culinary uprising against me, all right.

Griffin: Taako, you and Ren are partners on this project. What do you make?

Justin: Wait, I'm partners with— did you say Rick, or Ren?

Griffin: Ren.

Justin: Uuuuummmmm, we’re making croque-monsieur.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: You're making croque-monsieur and the whole time Ren is lik

Ren: Are you sure— this isn't what he asked for. This is—
Taako: Well, uh, why don't you pass the nutmeg and the gruyère and we can talk about it later.

Griffin: Did you load up a recipe?

Justin: What?

Griffin: Did you load up a recipe—

Clint: Hell yes, he did.

Justin: Hell yeah, I did. [Clint laughs]

Griffin: Tell me what you do with this.

Justin: I, uhm—

Griffin (softly): Walk me through it.

Justin: Okay, well. We're gonna preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Griffin: Okay, not that granular. [audience cheers] Okay, you turn in—

Justin: I mean I make it. What do you want, PERVERT?

[audience laughter]

Griffin: You turn in your fancy ham sandwich.

Justin: It’s croque-monsieur.

Griffin: And Mr. Rick says:}}

Mr. Rick: What do you think you're doin’? Take this back. I want a regular ham sandwich. That's what I asked for. You trying to get an F?
Taako: If F stands for fantastic croque-monsieur, then yes.

[audience cheers]

Taako: Hey, Rick—

Griffin: A few of the—

Taako: Hey, Rick.
Mr. Rick: Yeah?
Taako: [flirty] Take a bite, Rick.

[audience cheers]

Mr. Rick: I'm not going to take a bite of th—
Taako: RIIICK—
Mr. Rick: It's a weird looking ham sandwich—
Taako: RIIIICK. RIICK.

Griffin:  Some like other students in the class are standing up and just saying like

Students: Take a BITE, RICK!

[audience cheers]

Taako: Take a—

Clint: TAKE a BITE, RICK!

Clint and Travis: TAKE A BITE, RICK!

All, chanting: TAKE A BITE, RICK! TAKE A BITE, RICK!!

Griffin: Okay, thank you. He says,

Mr. Rick: Fine. God I just— every class I get bullied by kids. Bullied by kids into doing things.

Griffin: He takes a bite of your fancy ham sandwich and he says…

[pause]

Clint: D.

Griffin: I think his, like, his, like, uh— he just runs out classroom, sort of crying, and his pants fall down while he's going. [audience laughter] And suddenly like all the students are just like up on their desks Matilda-style, cheering you and Ren on. [audience cheers] Uh, you— the— you don't get a grade traditionally from Rick because he ran away and his pants fell down but— again, sorry, real Rick— uh, but the rest of the students get together and give you an A for the class. [audience cheers] And A stands for auto— aut—

Justin: [crosstalk] Advantage?

Griffin: Auto 20.

Justin: Awww, yeah.

Griffin: So at any point when you're about to roll you can just take a crit instead.

[audience laughter]

Justin: You do— are you sure you want to give that to me?

Clint: Awww.

Griffin: Yeah.

Justin: All right.

Griffin: All right, let's get into it. The three of you have fourth period together. You make your way out of the classroom building and over to the campus’s massive gymnasium for P.E.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: This facility is massive. The main gymnasium room has side chambers for locker rooms and a coach's office and a concession stand with a long open service window. The west and east walls are lined with bleachers that are like folded in right now, they’re not deployed bleachers-style. And they’re stacked 15 feet high, leaving more room for sports to happen. [audience giggling]

I wrote that. [audience laughter] Hanging from the ceiling are two basketball hoops on either end of the floor. And uhhh, uhhh uh... I wrote ‘and backboards’ like yeah, of course. [audience laughter] Below you the hardwood floor is slick and polished, you can barely see the seam in the middle of the floor where it opens up to reveal the Olympic sized pool underneath.

[audience cheers]

Justin: Yeah, It’s a Wonderful Life like a motherfucker.

[audience laughter]

Griffin: Sorry?

Justin: It's a Wonderful Life? [crosstalk] The dancing contest—

Griffin: Oh yeah yea—

Justin: It opens up—

Clint: It's all right, [crosstalk] 15 people in the audience got it—

Griffin: No, no, I get it, just traditionally you don't hear the words ‘it's a wonderful life,' like—

Griffin and Travis: '—a motherfucker.’

[audience laughter]

[Clint laughs]

[crosstalk]

Justin: Sydnee really likes that movie, so we watched it—

Griffin: Yeah, it's a good one.

Justin: For the holiday—

Griffin: So there's some familiar face—

Justin: Buffalo gals won't you come out tonight, won't you come out tonight.

Griffin: Jesus.

Clint: Jimmy Stewart.

Justin: Yeeaahh.

Clint: Donna Reed.

Justin: Donna Reed!

Griffin: Hell yeah, who else was in this film?

[audience laughter]

Griffin: So, there are some familiar faces in this classroom and you see them after everybody changes into their athletic attire and lines up on half court. Angus is there, he's in the lineup, next to you. So are Carey and Killian. Down the line a bit is Brody who inexplicably is still on his skateboard. [audience laughter] At the far end, all goofing on each other and just endlessly combing their hair are the Hammerheads. Suddenly the coach's office door opens and slams shut and a serious-faced human man walks toward the lot of you. And Angus kinda sees that you're having trouble remembering who this person is so he whispers his name discreetly to the three of you. He says,

Angus: Oh, that’s Coach Derek Taylor.

[music plays] [audience cheers]

Griffin: And Coach Derek Taylor walks forward—

Clint: [crosstalk] Coooooach Derek Taylor!!

Griffin: Sorry, I thought this Friday Night Lights reference would get more of a—

[audience cheers]

Travis: I’m more of a Saturday Night Lights kind of person.

Griffin: Coach Derek Taylor walks forward and gives you all a very inspiring speech.

Travis: Do it now.

Clint: Come on, do it! Give us the speech!

Griffin: He says,

Coach Derek Taylor: It’s come to my attention that there are some folks in this class that think P.E. is a big, dumb waste of time.

[laughter, one person audibly booing]

Coach Taylor: I’ll be the first to admit that P.E. isn’t as sexy as algebra or world history. But when you graduate you’ll look back on the lessons you learned in this class as some of the most valuable of your high school career. Lessons like accountability, leadership, how to catch a ball or throw a ball very fast at a teammate or some sort of goal. You don’t have to savor every moment of this class, but here in my gym you will show myself, and each other, some respect. Clear eyes, full sports, have fun!

[audience cheers, Travis laughing]

Travis: That’s good.

Coach Taylor: Today we’re continuing our 3-on-3 basketball tournament. Looks like our first match-up is the Hammerheads verses Tres— I’m not gonna say that.

Griffin: He looks at the three of you and he says,

Coach Taylor: Next time, you guys need to pick a different team name. I’m not gonna say that.

Justin: Uh, I cast Blur and Enhance Ability: Cat’s Grace.

[‘hell yeah’ can be heard from audience]

Griffin: Okay, what’s that do?

Justin: Blur— my body becomes blurred, shifting and wavering, to all who can see me for the duration. Any creatures have disadvantage for any attack rolls made against me, translate that into basketball. And then I get Cat’s Grace.

Griffin: What’s that?

Justin: Y’know, it’s like, good at basketball.

[Griffin and audience laughing]

Griffin: Fucking Gary Gygax hunched over his desk like, ‘we need a basketball spell.’

[audience laughing]

Griffin: Coach Derek Taylor says, like:

Coach Taylor: Hey, you didn’t just cast a bunch of magic on yourself to make yourself better at basketball like the Monstars, did ya? Hey, Taako. Hey, Taako—
Taako: [crosstalk] Yeah?
Coach Taylor: You didn’t just cast a whole bunch of spells on yourself to make yourself better like the Monstars—

Justin: I look down on him ‘cause I cast Alter Self to be taller too. We’ve come this far without using magic, I figured I could burn a few slots.

Griffin: All right, yeah. Uh, all right. The three of you take your basketball positions and Coach Derek Taylor holds out a basketball at center court. Marvey takes position for the jump, while he’s got still kind of a black eye situation from earlier. Who’s going to take the jump ball for Tres Horny Boys?

Travis: Well, Taako’s very tall now, sooo…

Clint: [crosstalk] I’ll do it!

Travis: It’s Taako.

[audience cheers]

Justin: Yeah, Merle does it.

Griffin: Alright, Merle—

Clint: I do it!

Griffin: Merle, roll an athletics check.

Travis: I stand behind Merle and throw him up in the air.

Griffin: No, no, no—

Travis: Globetrotters style!

Griffin: [crosstalk] We do— no, that’s not how the Globe—

Travis: GLOBE! TROTTERS! STYLE!

Justin: You know how the Globetrotters have always thrown each other around?

Clint: I throw a bucket of confetti at everybody!

Travis: Rip Taylor style!

Justin: I have, uh advantage on dexterity checks, that’s Cat’s Grace.

Griffin: Okay, okay. Uh, athletics—

Travis: 8, so that’s an 8 total.

Griffin: Okay, uh, Marvey jumps up and just, fucking posterizes you as he secures the ball for his team—

Travis: I karate chop his legs as he comes down.

Justin: That’s definitely a technical foul.

Griffin: Yeah you can do that but is — hey guys?! It’s basketball, a little bit, kind of, sometimes?

Clint: I will explain—

Travis: Okay I won’t karate chop his legs, but I will like—

Griffin: Cover him?

Travis: Check him? Yes.

Griffin: Okay.

Travis: Wait is this hockey?

Griffin: No!

Clint: The irony of us playing a basketball game-game should not be lost on you.

Griffin: We used to have a basketball hoop in our backyard, we know—

Justin: And we were all right at it—

Clint: Then take the net down, make it about 8 feet high.

Griffin: That is true.

Justin: My dad used to organise this thing on Wednesdays and Saturdays after we did all our chores, called Whoops Fest, it was w-h-o-o-p-s, and it was a combination uh, of basketball and Doctor Who day. Where we would—

[audience cheering]

Justin: Think about it, it makes sense where if we did all our chores we got to watch Doctor Who and play basketball.

Griffin: Um.

Travis: And that’s how we’re the well balanced children we are today.

Justin: Yeah.

Griffin: Yeah. Uh, Magnus. Sounds like you’re covering Marvey. He’s trying to pass it— he’s trying to pass it to Jerreeeeee, make a… make an athletics check.

[sound of dice rolling]

Travis: Nope.

Clint: Whoa!

Travis: What’s inspiration do?

Griffin: Uh, gives you advantage so you can roll again.

Travis: I’m gonna take that here 'cause that was a one. [crosstalk]

Clint: [crosstalk] That was a one!

[sound of dice rolling]

Travis: Oh yeah, that was an 18—

Griffin: Okay you get it.

Travis: —plus… 8, 26.

Griffin: You steal— you steal the ball from Marvey and now you have what’s called possession of the basketball.

Travis: Um, I would like to juke around said Marvey.

Griffin: Okay, uh, this was a maneuver. You will also roll plus athletics for this.

Travis: That’s a 20.

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Yeah. Alright, you get around him and you break away so you are not covered at all if you want to go for a shot.

Travis: I wanna go for two!

Clint: [sarcastic] Oh, what a surprise!

Griffin: Make a dexterity roll as you shoot the ball at the hoop.

Travis: That’s a 17 plus 2.

Griffin: That’s 2 points for Tres Horny Boys! Swish!

[audience cheering and clapping]

Griffin: Little Jerry takes the ball and is gonna try to pass it to Marvey. Merle or Taako, you wanna get in on this or are you trying to look for a spell to cast at this basketball game?

Clint: I cast—

Griffin: Holy shit.

Clint: —Lycanthropy and turn myself into a Teen Wolf!

Travis: Yeah!

[audience cheering]

Clint: Yeah!

Travis: Now—

Clint: Shut up Travis, shut up Travis!

Travis: B-b-before we celebrate too much Dad, I have to ask; [high pitched] do you have Lycanthropy?

Griffin: That’s not even a fucking spell—

Clint: [mocking] I don’t know because I don’t have any spell cards! Tell him, Lycanthropy’s a real spell!

Griffin: It’s super fucking not!

[more cheering]

Griffin: You can cast, like, Disguise Self to look like a werewolf.

Justin: 'Cause here’s what happens. I’m gonna settle this, uh, he cast Disguise Self to look like a werewolf but he continues to play with the ability of Merle so h— [wheeze laughter] he’s— he’s like a werewolf that plays basketball as good as dad.

Griffin: That’s good, you’ve disguised yourself to look like a werewolf—

Clint: I will accept that compromise!

Griffin: Uh, we’re gonna make a, uh, a contest against each other with athletics you— to the number you just rolled. You roll your 20-sided dice, please Christ in Heaven don’t do this to me every time. I rolled a 2.

Travis: Huh, I rolled a 4—

Clint: I rolled a 4!

Griffin: Okay you steal the ball from—

Clint: Yeah!

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Uh, you’re right up against it but now you are covered, uh, by Jerreeeeee. So you can take a shot but you’re gonna have disadvantage or you can give it to one of your teammates.

Clint: I’m gonna [garbled words] it looks to me like Taako is open, and—

Travis: Is that accurate?

Griffin: By the way, by the way, by the way, before this play starts, you hear the same bell and it chimes 3 times.

Clint: What? What bell?

Griffin: From the beginning. I forgot to do the rest of the bells, we’re at 3 bells.

[audience laughing]

Griffin: Oops~! [giggles]

Clint: 3 bells? What are you, Popeye the Sailor?

Justin: Has that been going down every time?

Griffin: [seriously] Yes. That’s the— that’s the weird thing is if I had been doing ‘em, they’d have been going down this whole time.

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Can you imagine if, like, the whole time the bells have been going down in number—

Travis: Oh man.

Griffin: And you’re like, ‘Woah! What?!’

Clint: Dong! Oh yeah, that would have built some serious tension.

Griffin: Right. But imagine, and now it’s at 3, oh no!

Travis: [laughing]

Justin: That’s so much worse than 4, which would have happened a few minutes ago!

Griffin: Merle, what are you doing? We’ve been going an hour.

Clint: Well I, uh, uh, the 3 bells threw me off! Um, I notice that because Taako is so beloved and well regarded that he’s not—

Travis: He’s yelling.

Clint: Well I have to, to be heard over you guys.

Travis: Fair enough.

Clint: He, uh, he— I pass it to Taako because he’s free and clear and driving toward— as the only one of the 4 of us who's ever actually seen a basketball game, I pass it to Taako because he’s driving on the— on the basket.

Griffin: Alright, make a—

Justin: And I throw it into the hole.

Griffin: Hold on! Roll your pass, roll plus dex.

Clint: Roll plus dex.

Griffin: Dexterity.

Travis: Roll the— roll—

Griffin: It’s a 0, I’ll make it easy for you, it’s a 0.

Clint: Yeah but that’s a 19!

Griffin: Alright, you get it to Taako.

Justin: I cast Levitate and I dunk it!

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Alright.

Clint: Surely you’ve got music for this, Griffin! You have to have music, something from Space Jam!

Justin: Yeah, you have dunk music?

[Space Jam Theme Song plays]

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Oh, wait, roll athletics Taako!

Travis: Crit 20!

Griffin: [crosstalk] It really did, it was a crit 20.

Clint: [crosstalk] Oh, here he goes!

Griffin: He’s gonna fucking sprint off the stage.

Travis: Crit 20...

Justin: I— y’know what, that was a crit 20! I’m gonna need it again, Griffin!

Griffin: Oh, you wanna hear the—?

Clint: Yeah, yeah.

[Space Jam Theme Song resumes]

Travis: Yeah!

Griffin: It does double damage, it does double Space Jam. Okay, um, yeah all right, that’s, that’s another good 2 points up on the board. Uh, the bell chimes 2 times.

Justin: [through laughter] I don’t care!

Clint: What, what is this bell?

Griffin: When the bell chimes 2 times you see Principal Hawthorne come in the room and start talking with Coach Derek Taylor about something. Um, and Little Jerry’s got the ball and he’s gonna pass it to Marvey, and Marvey is running down the, the basketball lane, getting ready to score points [crosstalk] for their team.

Travis: [crosstalk] I block him.

Griffin: Okay, uh, roll athletics.

Travis: Nope!

Griffin: Alright, he gets right by ya.

Clint: Another 1, we wanna keep track of all these.

Travis: That’s a crit 1, thanks new dice.

Griffin: Marvey throws up a 3, gets a 21, that’s 3 points. 3 to 4—

Travis: Oh I was so confused 'cause I thought you threw up a 3 and got 21 points.

[audience laughing]

Griffin: Who’s, uh, who's gonna take the ball in for your team?

Justin: I’m gonna cast Clairvoyance over where the two of them are talking.

Griffin: Okay.

Justin: Uh, so I have a spell, like, I can hear the shit they’re saying.

Griffin: Okay. And fuckin’ Principal—

Travis: I got the ball.

Griffin: —Hawthorne’s like,

Principal Hawthorne: Did you see Scandal last night?

Travis: I grab the ball.

Griffin: And Coach Derek Taylor’s like,

Coach Derek Taylor: Aw nah, my DVR fucked up again.

[audience laughing]

Coach Derek Taylor: Clear eyes, full sports, have fun.

Griffin: Uh, okay!

Travis: I pa— I have the ball.

Griffin: Yes?

Travis: I’d like to pass it to Merle.

Griffin: All right, you’re actually being, at this point, you’re being covered by Marvey and he’s like,

Maarvey: Oh gonna pass? Aw, such a tough guy.

Travis: I hit him with my butt real hard and knock him out of the way.

Griffin: Okay, roll, uh, roll a butt attack.

Travis: Uh, is that strength?

Griffin: Yeah~.

Travis: So that’s a 15.

Griffin: Uh, okay yeah, you butt attack him out of the way.

Travis: I pass to Merle.

Griffin: Okay. You roll a dex for a pass to Merle.

Travis: Oh no, god these suck! [singsong?] Uhhh ummm, that’s not it. Hit my can...that’s a 6 total.

[Griffin laughs]

Griffin: With a 6 you, like, overarm throw it to Merle and it just goes up and it gets stuck in the rafters.

[audience laughing]

Griffin: The play stops for a little bit while they try to find a new ball and Merle calls the three of you over— er, Merle, Jesus. Uh, Angus calls the three of you over, he’s standing over by the bleachers and he’s like,

Angus: Hey! Come here, come here, come here.

Griffin: And he’s got one, he’s got one of those big books you saw him with, and he says um,

Angus: I— I think I figured out what’s going on. What this is is not just a dream you all are having, it’s a— it’s a Dreamscape! That’s, uh, it’s like kind of a type of magic and somebody usually makes it. And I guess what is bad is, like, usually when you’re in a Dreamscape, somebody brings you there to, like, usually just to like test you or something and see how you respond in like a, some sort of crisis scenario.

Clint: Well as long as Ariel’s not grading we oughta be alright.

Griffin: Geez, still gonna hold that against her? Uh, and as he says that, the bell chimes one and all hell breaks loose. Pretty much literally. For a moment you think that the mechanisms in the floor below you have activated, opening up the pool below but what really happens is just a shock tears through the room and you see this purple pulsating rift torn open in the centre of the gym floor sending these bright fissures out in all directions. And from those fissures, these gnarled hands start to punch up and claw their way upward.

Griffin: The next few seconds are full of just, like, panicked running and screaming from all the students in the room, as a horde of shambling zombies rise up from the floor and begin pursuing the zom— pursuing the students around the gym. And you hear shouts coming from all around, you hear student— you hear one student yell,

Student: The doors are locked! We’re trapped!

Griffin: And sure enough, students are banging at the one exit, back out onto the quad but you can see it’s sealed by some sort of magic force. And so some of the students are just, like, scrambling up the wall of bleachers to get to safety. You see some rushing into one of the locker rooms and Coach Derek Taylor’s there just ushering them all into safety. This scene is chaos but you see Carey and Killian making their way into that locker room where most of the students are going to and motioning to the three of you wildly to follow them—

Travis: I motion back, no—

Killian: No, you come in here to the locker room!
Magnus: No listen, this is gonna be great! We haven’t fought zombies yet, I’m very excited!

Griffin: They say,

Killian: Please come to the locker room, you don’t have any stuff!

Griffin: You don’t have any weapons or gear to speak of.

Justin: I have been in the locker room for 3 minutes, just—

[Clint laughing]

Griffin: The three of you are in the locker room, I’m gonna go turbo mode because we’ve been going for 67 minutes. And a wave of undead pursue you close behind but Coach Derek slams the door as soon as the three of you clear it and barricades it with a few containers nearby. Most of the student—

Travis: Describe the containers.

[Griffin clicks his tongue]

Griffin: They’re metal. Most of the students made it in here and they’re all just kinda nervously milling about and there’s a narrow window in the door and through it you see the zombies just, like, pushing against the door all moaning in unison. And across the way on top of that—

Travis: Wait hold on, [to audience] moan in unison.

[audience moans in unison]

Griffin: Very spooky.

Travis: Thank you.

Griffin: And across the way on top of the stacked up bleachers you see a few unfortunate souls who didn’t make it to the relative safety of the locker room. The Hammerheads all ended up there, as did Principal Hawthorne. Brody is up there—

Travis: No!

Griffin: He’s still on his skateboard. You recognise one more student up there too, standing on the bleachers nervously clutching his book is Angus McDonald.

[audience screaming]

Griffin: They seem to be safe for now, 15 feet up a sheer wall of bleachers but the undead are clamoring at the bleachers, trying to pile up—

Clint: Aww, that’s too bad. That’s really too bad.

Griffin: Coach Taylor says— you hear Coach Taylor say,

Coach Taylor: Aw shit, shit shit! I’m gonna lose my job, I have to start over at a new school with a new team of kids whose lives I’m gonna have to transform all over again—
Magnus: Hey! You listen to me! That’s not how seniority works, good luck!

Griffin: Uh, he turns to the class and he says,

Coach Taylor: Okay, new assignment; anyone who wants to prove their physical fitness by getting out there and killing all those monsters gets an A in this class for the whole semester. Who’s game?

[audience cheering]

Griffin: And, uh, Killian walks up and says,

Killian: How about the whole year, not just the whole semester.

Griffin: And he says,

Coach Taylor: Okay fine, fine, the whole year!
Magnus: Yeah! High five!
Coach Taylor: Anybody else, any takers?!
Magnus: Yeah.
Merle: I gotta raise my— raise my D average, so yeah, I’ll do it.
Taako: I’m good.

[Clint laughs]

Griffin: He looks over to [garbled words] and he’s like,

Coach Taylor: Taako, you’ve got a J in P— this class. Are you sure? This could really save your—
Taako: All right I’ll save your ass.

Griffin: He says,

Coach Taylor: I can’t send you out there unequipped, come with me.

Griffin: And he takes you into a large room labeled ‘Sports Supplies’, and surrounding you are balls and bats and gloves and mats and pads and masks and sticks of every sport you can imagine. And Coach Taylor walks you to the middle of this room and says,

Coach Taylor: Okay, I’m gonna sanctify this room full of, just, beautiful sports equipment, so y’all can take you pick. It’s not a perfect solution but it’s better than nothing.

Griffin: And he kneels down in the centre of the room and he channels his holy symbol; his high school football state championships ring.

[audience cheering]

Clint: And you know what? That is such an inspiration to Merle—

Travis: We get it.

Clint: That he decides that he’s gonna dedicate himself—

[Griffin laughs]

Clint: —to sports!

Griffin: He says a prayer to sanctify this room of sports equipment and he says,

Coach Taylor: In this, our hour of need, we ask for your athletic patronage and protection. Oh, light of my life, end-zone of the cosmos.

Clint:  You have been working on this for months.

Griffin: He says,

Coach Taylor: This is my lord, my saviour, Touchdown Todd.

[audience cheering]

Coach Taylor: Todd! We need ya real bad right now, buddy. Bless these here beautiful sporting goods with your undeniable power so that these children might go and kill a bunch of monsters with them. In your holy name I pray boom shaka laka.

Clint[???]: Boom shaka laka laka! Boom shaka laka laka!

Griffin: What sports gear do you outfit yourselves with?

Travis: Here’s what I’m gonna need.

Griffin: [audibly smiling] Yeah?

Travis: I need a football helmet.

Griffin: ‘Kay.

Travis: I need two bats.

Griffin: Yep.

Travis: Uh, I’m gonna need some shoulder pads.

Griffin: Qu— are you going qu— uh, to make this faster; quarterback pads or like, linebacker pads?

Travis: Quarterback pads, I gotta move.

Griffin: Okay, okay. Take plus 1 AC for your— your pads—

Travis: Yeah!

Griffin: And, uh, really— what’s really convenient is that all the bats have the same stats as the weapons you already have.

Travis: Oh nice!

Griffin: Taako and Merle?

Clint: I’m gonna wear a Lacrosse helmet and two fencing foils with the tips broken off.

Griffin: Okay. Everybody’s kinda double— double-fisting.

Travis: I’m ambidextrous!

Griffin: Yeah sure. Taako, what you lookin’ at? You still looking at that croque-monsieur recipe?

Justin: I’m getting pretty hungry over here! Uh, I take two Jai Alai cestas. They’re big fucking wooden scoops. They look sweet. For Jai Alai, y’know?

Griffin: Yeah Jai Alai, I know about Jai Alai. So you’re casting spells with your Jai Alai gear?

Justin: Yeah.

Griffin: Okay. Uh—

Justin: And then I put them down for now and pick up a badminton racket. And, you guessed it, a shuttlecock!

[audience cheering]

Griffin: Cool, uh. Carey comes out strapped in with this track ‘n’—

Clint: A what? What did you just say?

Griffin: [confused] I haven’t said anything.

Clint: No, I mean what—

Travis: Wow, that was like 45 seconds delay—

Justin: [crosstalk] Yeah, no—

Griffin: [crosstalk] Jesus Christ!

Clint: I was trying to process what he said!

Travis: You can’t goof on it like 30 minutes later.

Griffin: Carey comes out and she’s wearing track ‘n’ field ge—

Justin: Rewind the podcast everybody, I gotta goof!

Griffin: She’s wearing track ‘n’ field gear with a big javelin.

Clint: Good call.

Griffin: And Killian is wearing full goalie pads with a big hockey stick.

Justin: Hell yeah!

[audience cheering]

Griffin: And they give y’all a big thumbs up and they kind of stack up on the locker room door. And Coach Taylor’s there and he looks at all of you and he says,

Coach Taylor: Y’all ready? You— you can do this. Clear eyes, full sports.
Merle: But is he staying in the locker room?
Coach Taylor: Yes I am. Hey, listen Merle, Merle! This is hard for me too. I got knee— bad knees from the sports.
Merle: From the sports?
Coach Taylor: Touchdown Todd is a fickle football god. One minute he’s honouring you with points and scores and RBI’s and the next minute [poof sound effect] your knees are gonzo. Alright 3, 2, 1, go!

Griffin: He throws open the door. Let’s roll initiative!

[audience cheering]

Travis: Hell yeah!

{65:38}

[music fades in and back out for commercial break]

Griffin: Hey everybody, this is Griffin McElroy. Your dungeon master, your best friend, and your… road dog. We’re hittin’ the road this weekend we’re going on a tour for My Brother, My Brother, and Me, it’s another podcast that we do. Thanks for listening to our live episode that we did here in Austin earlier this year. It was a really fun one, the crowd was really fun. The ending almost completely got away from us.

Which I think you’re going to experience here in just a little bit. Uh, here in a couple weeks we’re going to be putting up our other live show that we did in San Diego. Uh, which also was a lot of fun and I'm very excited for you to hear that one as well. And then I think the plan is after that, we’re going to start rolling out some of our little experimental mini-arcs where we’re gonna be taking turns running the games and playing different games. I think I have a cold, I think I’m just now realizing that just in the way that I’m talking into this microphone. Let’s talk about some advertisers so that I can go lay down and drink some Emergen-C.

[Ad 1- MVMT Watches, Ad 2- Naturebox, Jumbotrons]

Griffin: Thanks for listening and thanks for tweeting about the show using the ‘TheZoneCast’ hashtag. We’re really going to need your support as we kind of move around and try new stuff, keeping the show going and keeping the listener base strong. We don’t pay to advertise so we really appreciate you all spreading the word ‘cause it’s the only reason why the show has gotten to where it is today, and we are so, so, so grateful for that.

Like I said, in two weeks we’ll be doing our San Diego live show, putting that up. And then, after that we’re going to be moving on to our experimental arcs which I’m really, really excited to get to. Thanks to Maximumfun for having us.

[Maximumfun.org recommendations: Judge John Hodgman; Jordan, Jesse, Go!; Stop Podcasting Yourself; Lady to Lady]

[mcelroyshows.com]

Griffin: And with that, I think with that I’m going to let you get back to the weird ending to this live episode. And I hope you enjoy it, and I’ll talk to you in a couple weeks. Bye!

[music fades in and back out]

Justin: 4.

Griffin: Jesus

Travis: 7.

Clint: Of course, 19.

[audience cheers]

Travis: Actually, 21 for dad.

Clint: 21.

Griffin: First in the order is Merle Highchorch-chorch.

Clint: Of course. Yeah, when I say ‘High’ you say—

[scattered audience responses of ‘church’]

Travis: We don’t have time.

Griffin: Church.

Clint: Thank you.

Griffin: Okay so as you step [crosstalk] out into the gym you survey the battlefield and get a better idea of what this zombie horde is all about. There are in total 20 shambling zombies milling about the room and they’re all surrounding one big zombie in the center. And this bigger zombie is more composed than the others.

He’s wearing some armor and he seems to be in command of the whole horde. And all of them, king and horde alike, all turn in your direction as you step out of the room. Merle Highchurch, do you want me to load up all of the cleric spells on my phone? ‘Cause we can take like a minute and Travis and Justin can say a bunch of funny stuff—

Clint: Now hold on a minute. Did king— did coach friday night lights— did he— he blessed all this stuff, right?

Griffin: Yeah.

Clint: So it oughta be, we just stick him a little bit and he’ll die, right?

Griffin: You can do attacks with the weapons, for sure, yeah.

Clint: Well I got enchanted fencing foils.

Griffin: Yeah, sure.

Clint: [crosstalk] So I pick out two relatively short zombies that I can actually reach.

Griffin: Okay.

Clint: And I stab ’em in the gnards.

Travis: Whoa.

[audience cheers]

Griffin: Excellent. Roll, uh, roll your attack there’s a little thing where it says— where your weapon is. I think it is— yeah, plus 5. Travis, find it for him?

Travis: I got it.

Clint: I got it! Plus 5! And it’s a 4.

Travis: It's a 9 total.

Clint: 9. Except I have— don't I have something that lets me roll twice?

Griffin: No you have—

Griffin & Travis: —disadvantage—

Griffin: —and I’m going to use that later. Thanks for reminding me.

[audience laughter]

Griffin: Somebody asked for music and uh—

[sad trombone sound effect] [Audience laughs]

Griffin: Drag ‘em. All right. You run up and you kind of poke two undead people in their— genitals and they say “Okay” and then— [Audience laughs] The order moves to the next person. Uhhh it’s uh… Carey is gonna take the javelin and just chuck it right at the king zombie. And she rolled a fifteen? Um. [single cheer from the audience] And, this zombie king, as this javelin is coming, actually picks up two of the smaller zombies and holds them up as a shield. [audience muttering, another audible cheer]

And so they get pierced by this javelin, uh, and they fall down dead but the king zombie is untouched. Uh, and Killian rrrrrruns up and does worse than Merle on her attack on some other zombies. So. Uhhh, there are fewer zombies now but the king is untouched. Next in the order are the zombies. Ummm… I think I’m gonna do Merle just cause you did run up there I think. [laughs]

Clint: Of course you will.

Griffin: That’s a 22 versus A.C. I think that might hit.

Clint: Yeah it— it does.

Griffin: [holding back laughter] Somebody said double check! Trust me on this one we’ve been doing this podcast for three years I— know what their AC is at this point. You take 20 points of damage as you are grabbed. Uh—

Justin: He’s fine.

Griffin: And you are pulled into the zombie horde—

Clint: Oh. Wow.

Griffin: —meaning you are grappled, also. Taako and Magnus you just see Merle just get pulled into this zombie horde. And take a bunch of damage. Dad are you going to write down how much damage you took?

Travis: I did. I did it for him.

Griffin: Next in the order is Magnus Burnsides.

Travis: Where is the mechanism to open the pool?

Griffin: … Oh.

[Audience cheers and applauds]

Clint: You’re gonna get ‘em wet?

Griffin: [crosstalk] It’s right— it’s right next to you.

[Audience laughs and cheers]

Travis: I hit it.

Griffin: Okay! Yeah, sure! You pop open this— this thing, you pop open this— it’s probably a hatch of some sort and there’s a lever inside—

Travis: And I just make eye contact with the king as I do it.

[scattered laughter from audience]

Griffin: Uh and it moves quick, this mechanism that uh, I actually did write down. It’s a wonderful lifestyle. It opens up right underneath them. And the king rolls a nat 20 to avoid, but roll a— roll a d20.

[dice rolling]

Travis: Twelve?

Griffin: Twelve of the zombies, uh, do not save and fall into the— the pool below [some cheers from the audience] and you see them kind of fizzle and burn as they fall into the uh, the water. [Audience cheers] There are now only six zombies surrounding the king, uh—

Travis: I’m going to take my second attack.

Griffin: Uh, well! Yeah, I guess you attacked the lever so sure.

Travis: And I hurl um, my bat, Chance Lance-style, at the king.

Griffin: So you’re just throwing a bat?

Travis: You said they did the same thing as my weapons!

Griffin: Okay yeah. Uhhh roll a— [crosstalk]

Clint: [crosstalk] Why don’t you break it first?

Griffin: Roll an attack.

Clint: Then it would be all jagged and shit.

Travis: Seventeen plus eight— nope! Plus nine—

Griffin: Oh—

Travis: —uh 26.

Griffin: That’s good the 25 wouldn’t have done it but the 26 does. Uh, yes that is a hit, roll damage?

Travis: Um.

Griffin: Just use Railsplitter’s—

Travis: Oh, not that great. Three, plus five, eight.

Griffin: Okay he just holds up one zombie who blocks the attack for him but the zombie disintegrates as this holy, uh weapon touches— touches him. [Audience cheering] Down to five zombies, Taako.

Travis: And now I am going to uh, action surge–

Griffin: [resigned] Ohshit.

[Audience cheering]

Travis: To attack— [crosstalk]

Justin: [crosstalk] Aww man, I wanted to play D&D!

[Audience laughing]

Travis: To attack the other zombies in front of me.

Griffin: Okay!

Travis: I thought we’re trying to be quick, that is nineteen.

Griffin: Yeah that hits.

Travis: Five plus five, ten points of damage.

Griffin: Uh yeah, with a ten you take out one more zombie, and they just sort of smush underneath the weight of your holy axe— your holy bat, it’s not an axe. Sorry I got distracted cause I just heard somebody go ‘awwww!’ It’s a fuckin’ zombie! [Audience laughs] Uhhh Taako! Four zombies and the king.

Justin: I uh… take my… badminton racket—

Griffin: Kay.

Justin: Uh. And, uh, I uh, summoning all my strength, I, uh, thrrrrow it… at the center of his head.

Griffin: Okay.

Justin: [slowly] I throw my badminton racket at the king’s head—

Griffin: That’s not a good job you’re doing I think.

Justin: Let me try, hold on. [Pauses as dice rolls, laughs] As it turns out, thanks to the grade I got uh, uh earlier it’s a twenty! Oh!

[Audience cheers]

Justin: [laughing] Amazing! Amazing!

Griffin: [laughing] Sooo stupid.

Justin: Amazing I can’t believe I—

Griffin: You throw a badminton racket—

Justin: —uh if we could roll the tape back, I did make sure that he wanted to give me that, so I did, I remember just a [crosstalk] decapitated with a badminton racket basically–

Griffin: [crosstalk] I’m surprised– surprised that this is what you wanted to spend it on. Alright, um you throw a badminton racket, roll a, I think your damage–

Justin: A magical— it’s a magical—

Griffin: A magical badminton racket. We’ll say it’s uh, roll a d12 two times. We never use that d12. Nobody does. [Audience laughs] Apparently.

Justin: It’s an eight! Aaand a twelve! [chuckles]

[Audience cheers]

Griffin: Uhhh okay he holds up two— two zombies to sort of block it, and they evaporate as the racket hits them and it goes through and also hits him in the head a little bit.

Justin: Nice.

[Audience applauds and cheers]

Griffin: Okay. Heeeeee is, uh, has taken some damage. Top of the order again, Merle!

Clint: I cast ‘Burn Undead’!!

[Audience cheers]

Travis: Now are you using the Ring of the Grammarian? Because you could do that.

Clint: Do I have the Ring of the Grammarian?

Griffin: No, you don’t–

Clint: Awrgh.

Griffin: I mean, ‘Turn Undead’ is also very good.

Clint: Tr— Yeah! Turn… [audience cheers] I have a cold.

[Audience claps, shouts of ‘Turn undead!’]

Clint: Turn undead! It kills…

Griffin: [crosstalk] Shit.

Clint: … CR2.

{78.42}

Griffin: Okay, uhhh, the two little zombies, just, pfffft. Evaporate as you turn ‘em. Everybody failed their roll. The other, uh the king zombie, who is damaged, uh he… just. He just says, "Fuuuck this!"

{78.57}

Griffin: Uh, and because of ‘Turn Undead,’ has to run away as fast as he can and because of that, he turns and he immediately just runs into the pool. [Audience erupts into cheers] Um.

Clint: WAIT A MINUTE! I WON?

Griffin: Yeah.

Clint: I— [laughs maniacally] [Audience cheers louder]

Griffin: [while audience is cheering] The king– the king zombie is just dissolving, in the water. And just gurgling and screaming. And Coach— Coach Derek Taylor pops out of the locker room and flips the lever back and just closes the floor back over the king zombie as it goes down. And you celebrate, I imagine, that you’ve just done this, but almost—

Clint: [sings the Final Fantasy victory fanfare]

Griffin: Oh that would’ve been a good one to have in here too— [crosstalk]

Clint: [crosstalk] Oh come on.

Griffin: Do I have anything?

Clint: How about ‘Can’t Touch This’?

Griffin: I only put in four like, audio cues, did you get a— [sound of a race horn blares]

[Audience cheers]

Griffin: As soon as the floor closes over that zombie, the room… changes a bit. There’s this red ripple that goes all throughout the room. And then… climbing out of this red ripple, uh, a huge form that I’ll describe. Two enormous wings emerge from the floor, and then two hands covered in razor sharp claws pull a long, draconic form from out of this red ripple, and this body is covered in these thick, metal plates from toe to tip, and as it emerges, suddenly standing in front of you is the imposing form of an ancient bronze dragon.

[Audience cheers]

Travis: I hit the button on the pool.

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: Uh actually that mechanism as you reach over to it there’s a red ripple, and that entire lever just disappears.

Travis: I punch the wall as hard as I can.

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: You hurt your hand very badly. I think Coach Derek Taylor sees this dragon and sees the lever disappear and goes,

Coach Derek Taylor: [whispering] Ohhh nooooo.

Griffin: And he turns and runs back into the locker room. [Audience laughs] Angus is up on the— this dragon is like, a fucking tank. It looks invulnerable. Angus is up on the bleachers and he shouts,

Angus: Sirs! Sirs I figured it out!

Griffin: It’s so weird.

[Audience laughter]

Angus: I figured it out! It’s not just you three asleep in the real world, in this dreamscape, someone brought you into the dreamscape! All of this chaos is being created by someone in this very room!

Travis: It’s Brody.

[Scattered audience laughter, then gradual increase in laughter and cheering]

Griffin: [laughing] First… [more audience laughter] First in the order is, we’re starting at the top Merle Highchurch.

Travis: I mean I’ve seen TV and movies before.

Clint: Here we gooooo… I cast ZONE OF TRUTH!

[Audience explodes into cheers]

Griffin: I got a 9.

Clint: Huh?

Griffin: Who are you casting it on? Just like in the bleachers area where everybody is?

Clint: Yeah! Up where everybody is! It’s [crosstalk] convenient placing!

Griffin: [crosstalk] Okay, Principal Hawthorne says like,

Principal Hawthorne: I just thought Scandal was just okay last night.

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: Uh…

Clint: Broooody. Come oooooon. [in a sing-song voice] I cast Zone of Truth!

Griffin: Brody says uh,

Brody: What’s happenin’ in here is really good! And I like it! A lot! A big dragon, comin’ to kill everybody? Aww, heck yesssss.

Griffin: And he does a fucking grind on the bleachers.

[Audience laughs and applauds]

Griffin: Uhhh next in the order is—

Clint: Wait! What did everybody else say?

Griffin: Uhhh… Angus says like, [holding back laughter] Angus says,

Angus: I- I- I drink protein shakes everyday and it’s- [Audience laughs] it’s why I am the way I am and I hate the way they taste.

Griffin: Magnus, you’re up next.

Travis: Can I get over to the bleachers?

Griffin: Uhh, sure.

Travis: Okay. [laughs] I want to kill Brody.

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: You’d be kind of at a disadvantage if you wanted to like, climb up there.

Clint: [laughs]

Travis: Then I want… to throw my bat at him.

Griffin: [laughs] Okay. [Some cheering from audience] Roll uh, plus attack. Plus attack is not uh, it’s not anything–

Clint: Now we need a twenty.

Travis: I have 16 plus 9, 25.

Griffin: Alright! Uh… I won’t make you roll damage. Umm…

Travis: I throw it really high.

[scattered audience laughter]

Griffin: You just kinda wang it at him like--

Travis: And— And I also just wanna be scooting past the dragon like,

Magnus: ‘Scuse, uh, uh one second!

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: Oh yeah I should uh, uh… Attack of opportunity that’s a nineteen? Versus A.C.—

Travis: Miss.

Griffin: Really???

Travis: Yeah. With my shoulder pads I’m at a 21.

[Audience cheering]

Griffin: All right. this dragon takes a bite at you and you kinda get—

Magnus: Ah! One sec— Wait one second! I’ll be right back, dragon.

Griffin: And you “taste my steel” your bat up at Brody and you hit him in the gut, and he… falls off of the bleachers. And as he hits the ground immediately that bronze dragon disappears in the same red ripple, and Brody stands up. And he laughs. But in a much deeper, more sinister voice than you heard before. And he says,

Brody: Well done. You’ve… solved my high school puzzle. [Audience cheers and applauds] But! But you don’t seem to understand the rules. In this world—

Travis: I punch him.

[Audience laughter]

Brody: Uh. Wait, can you— can you please wait just one moment.

Travis: Uhh!

Brody: Just don’t punch me yet. In this world, I’m in control.

Griffin: And then that– oh I think I have music here. Uh and then that, uh… [Griffin makes a ‘boop’ sound, Persona 3 Final Boss Theme starts playing] That red ripple that you’ve seen a few times now? You see it spread out from his body, consuming the whole gymnasium, and he floats up towards the back of the room, and as he goes, pieces of wood tear off the walls and bleachers and up off the floor, all flying towards him. Uhh and he changes forms right in front of your eyes. Suddenly, Brody is the gymnasium.

His body… is made of these jagged pieces of wood all suspended off the basketball hoop in the back of the room, just two arms and huge, a huge wooden head sprouting out of the backboard on his chest, and below him the hardwood floor is cracked and peeled upwards repeal— revealing dozens of these just, waving hands grabbing at the three of you desperately. And the wall behind him collapses and the beautiful views of the campus you saw earlier have been replaced with this shifting red miasma that blots out the sun and the sky. And he says,

Brody: I have brought you here to learn your weaknesses and sell them to the highest bidder but now that you know my secret, you can’t leave the dreamscape alive.

Griffin: And he waves one of his wooden arms at you, and all of your sports equipment disappears in a red ripple. And you hear Coach Taylor shout from the locker,

Coach Derek Taylor: Touchdown Todd! Do something, they’re only children!

[Audience laughter, music stops]

Griffin: Everybody make a dexterity save.

Travis: [rising in pitch] Uuuhhhhmmmm? That’s a seventeen.

[Single whoop from audience]

Clint: That’s a four…

[Audience laughter]

Justin: Sixteen.

Griffin: Uhhh. Alright, Magnus.

Travis: Yes?

Griffin: All of your gear is gone. But the whole building shakes as he transforms. And the basketball that was stuck in the rafters gets shaked loose. [muffled audience laughing] And falls towards you, and you catch it. And you hear Angus shout,

Angus: Do it, guys!

Griffin: And Taylor shouts,

Coach Derek Taylor: Teamwork! Please! Do it!

Griffin: And I had this queued up for this moment?

[Space Jam theme plays {87.08} to audience cheers]

Griffin: [over audience cheering] You feel a tremendous power in this basketball. As Brody’s form waves off of the hoop at the back of the room.

[Audience is still cheering]

Justin: I cast Bigby’s Hand? But this time it looks like Michael Jordan’s hand, just like, taking the ball and ready to shove it in.

Travis: I— I do the greatest juke a human being’s ever done and do a side pass to Bigby’s hand.

Griffin: Uh okay. Make a— make a dexterity throw. These hands that are up off the floor are grabbing [crosstalk] at you.

Travis: [crosstalk] Shiiiiit! That’s an eighteen plus two that’s a twentyyyyyy!

Griffin: Alright you pass him— [Audience cheering] You pass it to Taako.

Justin: I cast Bigby’s hand—

Griffin: [crosstalk] Okay okay okay—

Justin: [crosstalk] that looks like Michael Jordan’s hand, and I shove it down his fuckin’ throat.

[Audience laughs]

Griffin: You reach across the room. Make… the most important athletics check of your entire life.

Clint: I cast athletics boost on Taako!

[Audience cheers]

Griffin: [laughing] You do!

Justin (muffled): It’s a SEVENTEEN!

[Audience cheers more]

Griffin: Take advantage on that because he cast Bless to improve your athletics roll—

Clint: That’s what I meant to say.

Justin: [voice rising into an excited screech] It’s a NINETEEEEEN!

[Audience cheers and applauds]

Griffin: I wish I hadn’t blown my quad city DJ—

[Justin, Griffin, Clint indistinguishable crosstalk]

Justin: Let me just get it one more time?

Griffin: There’s a— hold on I have a different song.

[“Wonderland Round Three” starts playing]

[Audience screams]

Griffin: You fucking reach your hand all the way across the room with the basketball, dodging these— I guess you’re like— are you off the floor or is this just your hand?

Justin: Yeah, I’m just flying through the air.

Griffin: And he’s— these hardwood hands are grabbing at you, trying to pull you down—

Justin: No dice!

Griffin: But they just aren’t doing it, and from the, fucking foul line Bigby’s hand reaches down and slams dunks the ball right in the center of Brody’s chest, and right when that happens Angus actually pulls out a wand and casts Shatter, and the fucking backboard just explodes [audience screams and cheers] as you dunk it in.

Clint: [laughing]

[“Wonderland Round Three” fades out]

Griffin: And as the backboard explodes the rest of the gymnasium seems just to disintegrate away around you, and the three of you are falling for a while as the gym is just gone, and you wake up in a— a dark, stone-wrought room. And when you look outside, you, Taako, have been here before.

You realise you’re in the Underdark, the drow capital. Um. You’re in a shady part of the Underdark, if such a thing exists. Um. And you’re lying on these three soft beds, um, all lined up next to each other and behind you is a fourth, and lying in that bed is a mind-flayer, an eldritch sort of humanoid creature that specialises in these kinds of psychic assaults, and it’s Brody. And as you all stand up from your beds, he reaches towards you. He says,

Brody: [weakly] If you get dunked on in the dream… [Audience laughs and claps] you get dunked on… [choking] in real…

[Audience cheers louder]

Griffin: And he— and he fucking dies!

[Audience cheers, Clint laughs]

Travis: And in case you were wondering, that’s how we beat Brody.

Griffin: And that’s how you beat Brody.

Travis: That’s a true story.

Griffin: Thank you all for coming to The Adventure Zone! That’s all I prepared! [Audience cheers] Sorry! [THEME MUSIC: "Déjà Vu" by Mort Garson begins to fade in] Sorry I did such a bad time management job! Thanks for coming byeeeeeee!

[End of Episode]

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